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Picture of Circus Tavern
Image posted by Just a quick pint, then I'm off
Submitted on Monday, 12th February 2018
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Circus Tavern, Manchester Central, Manchester

86 Portland Street
M1 4GX
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Served areas

Reviews of Circus Tavern (Average Rating: of 10) Add Review see review guidelines

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Rob Hunter left this review about Circus Tavern

This is one of those pubs you have to go in, just to say you have been. My last visit was about five years ago so thought it was about time to refresh my memory and paid a visit last Saturday afternoon. Although the building must be about the same size as the Grey Horse, the Circus feels a lot smaller inside and this must be down to the layout which I assume has not been touched much over the years. The (tiny) bar is straight ahead as you enter, with two rooms to the right, front and back. Two hand pulls for cask ale, offering Tetley Cask and Dizzy Blonde. I went for the Tetley as I could not remember the last time I have had this, suffice to say I won't be in a rush to have it again but it was perfectly drinkable.

It was fairly busy at the time of my visit, though it doesn't take much for a place this size to feel busy. However we managed to grab the other half of someone's table and as we supped our drinks other people came and went so there was a fair turnover of customers meaning you probably wouldn't be waiting for a seat for very long.

The sign outside reads, "The smallest bar in Europe, the biggest welcome" but unfortunately I found the lady serving to be a bit disinterested, though not unfriendly. She was busy talking to her friend who was stood in front of the bar, and anyone who has been here will know there isn't really the room for that on top of two customers being served and someone else trying to squeeze down the corridor.

I can't say I dislike the place but I can't help thinking it trades off its "smallest bar" claim and once you've done it there isn't a great deal to rush back for.

On 16th August 2018 - rating: 6
[User has posted 495 recommendations about 452 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Just a quick pint, then I'm off left this review about Circus Tavern

Tiny two-room pub with the smallest servery you've probably ever seen (just wide enough to accommodate two handpumps and a keg fount) in the wood-panelled entrance corridor. Limited amount of basic seating and some sports and music pictures on the walls. Two real ales on offer: Robinson's Dizzy Blonde and Tetley Cask (£3.50). Oddly good.

On 18th February 2018 - rating: 7
[User has posted 5968 recommendations about 5968 pubs]

Please Note: This review is over a year old.

Malden man left this review about The Circus Tavern

I called in here on an absolutely filthy evening with rain bouncing up off the pavement, a warm friendly welcome inside and the patient barmaid waited while I shook myself down and my steamed up glasses cleared. It really is a tiny place, a short corridor links two small rooms with the squint corner bar occupying a corridor corner. Tetley Bitter and Robinson's Dizzy Blonde are clearly the regular beers. The back room has football related stuff regarding the two Manchester teams with a montage also to George Best, Best, Law and Charlton feature in the front room where there are also appreciations of local actors. Dark stained wood panelling, old tiled fireplace with a small telly above.
I settled in the front room and was straight into the chat with a Scottish bloke and a trio of American women who were fascinated by pub culture and football. A very enjoyable visit to another Manchester iconic institution.

On 15th November 2015 - rating: 7
[User has posted 1685 recommendations about 1662 pubs]

View more reviews of Circus Tavern (12)
External web links for Circus Tavern

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Pub location see interactive map of local area
Map location corrected by Alan Hurdle
Manchester Oxford Road, 0.37 miles, 7 min walk (show)
Manchester Piccadilly, 0.52 miles, 9 min walk (show)
Deansgate, 0.66 miles, 12 min walk (show)
Latest updates View all updates for Circus Tavern, Manchester
29th Jun 2019, 12:53
Picture submitted by Wynne Route approved
29th Jun 2019, 11:19
Picture submitted by Wynne Route

Pub Details

Pub details supplied by members of this site to the best of their knowledge. Please check with pub directly before making a special trip.

  • Real Ale : Yes last updated 23 September 2011 by hondo .
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